Sunday, March 28, 2010

one of my little dreams



Once upon a time (or about a year and a half ago) I ran into a lot of rejection with a number of "green themed" and recycling ideas that I pitched for a variety of projects. It seemed the opinion with craft industry professionals was that green is a trend that would run its course, that the market was flooded with green crafting concepts and eventually everyone would move on to something else. I've gotten used to rejection but it is always discouraging, especially when you don't agree and ESPECIALLY when the ideas come from deep in your heart.



I decided to forget about industry opinions and to follow my green, trash loving, creative intuition. I continued with my mission to spread the word- that dumpster diving can be just as fun as shopping at Michaels! I am SO passionate about my cause- about recycling, creating with intention and being aware of how we consume and spend money on the things we make. I believe art should come from the unexpected (even trash!), cost little money, it can inspire change, evoke a conversation and make you smile.



That is why when I received an email from Ms.Brown- an elementry school teacher in Canada- I got a little choked up. She is using my recycled city project in her classroom to teach the concept of community, shelter and wants vs. needs. They have started their own cardboard city, full of color and wonderful details that only kids can come up with! And while some artists dream of fame, fortune and industry success, my dreams are kind of simple these days- I want to inspire thought, conversation and change through art. Thank you so much to Ms. Brown and her class for making one of my little dreams come true (and for making all that rejection TOTALLY WORTH IT).




25 comments:

  1. How touching, inspiring and wonderful! Congrats to you and your message. May it reach far and wide. I
    Kudos to Ms. Brown for caring and sharing the message.

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  2. Fabulous! So good to hear of artists following their passions...what a wonderful story from that teacher!

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  3. I LOVE the idea of recycling to create art! How sad to think that it's only a trend to try to clean up the planet.

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  4. So exciting to see your idea blossom. I feel touched. Love your idea of dreams Alisa.

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  5. whyducks8:06 AM

    Well done Ms. Brown and the children, and well done too you.

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  6. That's such a great story :)

    I'm 100% with you on reusing junk, dumpster diving. I'm in that weird place in my crafting professional life that I'm still building my craft aesthetic, style, work pattern, and trying to maintain a day job, too. My ideal approach would be to make crafts to sell mostly (exclusively?) from reclaimed junk materials.

    So far, I'm... working on it.

    I was directed to your blog from One Pretty Thing a month or so ago, and I have very much enjoyed. Thanks!

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  7. Way to go Alisa! How awesome that you inspired many cities to pop up from your green ideas! I for one think your philosophy is AWESOME! You inspire me every day...I look forward to what you bring to us! You have inspired me to do some sweater re-mixes from my closet and stash instead of buying new! You keep it up!! Green is here to stay; THANKFULLY!! If more listen we will have a better planet for those who come after us!! YEA!

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  8. Very inspiring and that's the way it should be... the industry shouldn't control our creative passions! I'm glad you just did what you loved!

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  9. wonderful!! congrats on touching a teacher with your art, and now all those little souls will view a cereal box in a whole different way! very cool.

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  10. This is so wonderful!!! It reminds me of this story http://www.kimiko-usa.com/frog_story.htm I am thoroughly inspired!!

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  11. Fantastic! I made these as a child and also I made doll houses out of cardboard boxes! I loved Troll Dolls and well, they had to have houses!

    You Rock!

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  12. Now THAT'S what it's all about!!!
    Good for you. Every heart touched, no matter how small that touch is, no matter how fleeting or far away, is a change for the good in the world.

    "Let no one come to you without leaving better and happier." - mother Theresa

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  13. Awwww...that's wonderful, Alisa. What a rewarding message you received from the teacher. Definitely very gratifying to hear that an idea you had is spreading to other artists and students far and wide. Congrats on YOUR success!

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  14. How wonderful to know you made such an impact, and what a great teacher to be teaching outside the box! Oh, there's a pun there somewhere...

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  15. i'm using it in my classroom also! it's wonderful!

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  16. how cool is that!!! hurrah for Ms Brown and for you:)

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  17. Just found your blog through Mary Freeman (A Splendid Adventure) and liked your cardboard city. I did a little vid on my recycling of a box...thought you might be interested. Here's the link(s) (it's two videos) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qc4kIuPyBYo and here's the other: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45z-0QFg1Bg&feature=related Yeah for recycling! Love your blog!

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  18. I think that dumpster diving is WAY more exciting than shopping at Michaels!
    ANd thank you again for all of your inspiring work -- I'm pretty sure that my students are your biggest fans :)

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  19. I am SO HAPPY for you! Never ever let your dreams go. If we can inspire just one child to think differently and toward the future, then we can count ourselves successful. You've inspired a class full. Good for YOU!

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  20. I love Mrs. Brown's class' cardboard city! It DOES really say community -- especially in all their townhouses and apartment buildings (or so they look to me). I have been using townhouses in my artwork, based on a drawing of our house that my son did a few years ago which looks a lot like these kids' houses. It is all so familiar and wonderful. Thank YOU for inspiring them and making teh world a little smaller (and maybe even a little greener).

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  21. great post! i'm with you in believing in recycling!

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  22. Alisa
    I think that those that are truly innovative aren't usually accepted by the mainstream (or industry in this case). I am also very passionate about using only recycled materials in my clothing creations and have been doing so for most of my life...my business is finally starting to take off a bit but anything that challenges the norm doesn't come without a price...Anyway if you can't package and sell it most companies don't want anything to do with it - and telling people they can use junk or waste - well that just hurts them in the pocket. Lots of us LOVE what you do. You're an inspiring and motivated woman - keep it up!

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  23. Wow-- wonderful!
    You are changing the world; we are using this idea in our homeschool group, too. I'll post the pictures and link back to you when the kids are done.
    We also plan to take our city on the road, just as you did.
    Green won't go out of style, girl. Keep up the inspiration!

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